New backup form

Create backups of your Power Apps environment

Are you creating backups of your Power Apps? just in case someone damages the app or accidentally deletes the app? Do you export each app and keep the files somewhere secure?

Create Backups

In Power Apps you can also use the backup option to keep a copy of all your apps in an Environment.

Environments in Power Apps wiht back up option

The option only exists when you have created a Common Data Service database.

Environment in Power Apps without Backup option


Also the default environment doesn’t have the backup option available.

Default Environment

This might be another good reason not to develop your apps in the default environment.

To create the backup simply select the environment and then go for create.

Create a backup


Then you can give your backup a name


New backup form

And your backup will be created. When this is done successfully you will get a green bar confirming the success.

Successful backup


When you click on the see your backups or on the Restore link in the menu you will get to your overview of the backups.

Backups overview


using the restore option you can now restore your apps to your environment.


Restore the backup

Ok, this is good.

But now the troubles started for me.

No valid targets

Ok, so I can create a backup, but I can’t restore it. The link in the pink message actually  gave me the clue.

Can I restore to a production environment?

In order to prevent accidental overwrites, we don’t allow users to directly restore to a production environment. To restore to a production environment, first switch it to a sandbox environment. See Switch an environment. Note that changing an environment type to sandbox will immediately reduce backup retention to 7 days. If you do not need backups (restore points) older than 7 days, then you can safely switch the type. If you think you may need restore points older than 7 days, we strongly recommend that you keep the environment as production and consider restoring to a different environment of type sandbox.

This of course is a nice safety blanket.


You will have to create a Sandbox environment first (if you haven’t got one)

Create Sandbox

When I completed the form


Once you have created your sandbox environment you can restore your environment and recover your apps.

After thoughts

Like mentioned in the comments below, you might think that you will need a CDS in your environment. Well that is indeed right. Have you noticed that when you create your first Approval flow that a CDS is created automatically? So all you would need to do is create one approval flow and your backup option is available. You can of course also just simply create a CDS data base manually.

8 thoughts on “Create backups of your Power Apps environment

  1. commented on January 31, 2020 by ilmarco

    I only use Sharepoint as a backend., so no CDS. Can I then not have a backup option, if I get this correctly?

    • Well, actually all you need to do is run an approval flow. This will create a CDS for you and then you can create a backup

  2. commented on January 31, 2020 by ilmarco

    Never done that. Can you be more specific on how to do that?

  3. commented on February 3, 2020 by jeffangama

    I guess you also need the correct licence which includes CDS.

    • Hi Jeff,

      I’m not 100% sure. I can create a CDS without a licence (when I create an approval step) and this seems to enable the backup option. Restore however might be more of an issue as you will need to create a sandbox environment to restore the app to. I wonder if the security trimming on the backup option is slightly too open.

      • commented on February 3, 2020 by jeffangama

        Office 365 licence isn’t supposed to give access to CDS though, it this is a miss from MS 🙂 ? DO you have Dynamics 365 licence ? Because it gives CDS access

      • Since flow approvals are not premium and approvals are stored in a CDS you will find that everybody has CDS. Just in a very compact form. If you are doing anything else with the CDS then you will need a licence.

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